Göteborg Film Festival will host the Audentia Award for 2019. The Award, instigated by Eurimages, has previously been handed out at Istanbul Film Festival (2016), Locarno Film Festival (2017) and Toronto Film Festival (2018).
Audentia – meaning “courage” and “bravery” in Latin – reflects two vital qualities for any woman wishing to pursue a career in film directing. With the Audentia Award, Eurimages intends to celebrate women who have had the courage to make that choice, by giving their work greater visibility and inspiring other women to follow in their footsteps.
The nominees for the Audentia Award are:
An exuberant young woman ends up in a sleepy industrial town while searching for the American dream in the Belarusian Oscars contribution.
In Darya Zhuk’s multiply prize-awarded debut film, the vibrant Velya yearns to get away from the dreariness of daily life in Minsk in the nineties and dreams of becoming a DJ in Chicago. When she books a trip to make her dream come true she provides a made-up telephone number in her visa application. The number happens to be for a house in Crystal, a city completely built around a rundown crystal polishing factory. Velya is forced to go there and wait by the phone to answer when the call about her visa comes. She winds up in the middle of local wedding preparations, and a wonderful adventure begins.
One of this year’s most praised films, and an exceptionally powerful and moving drama about the Nigerian Joy who gets caught up in trafficking and prostitution in contemporary Europe.
This multiply prize-awarded drama is about a young woman who made her way to Europe to try to create a better life for her family, her daughter and herself. Now she living with other women in an apartment in Vienna. They sell sex but most of the money they earn goes to their “Madame,” who has confiscated their passports until they have paid off their debt. As director and scriptwriter, Sudabeh Mortezai unsentimentally portrays the brutal everyday life of these women. Joy Alphonsus is unrivaled in the leading role of the same name, Joy, a woman who with indomitable resolution challenges a system that seems to be designed to break her down.
Tuva Novotny’s impressive directorial debut is a deeply gripping family drama in which Pia Tjelta gives a strong performance of a mother in crisis.
For decades, Tuva Novotny has been one of the Nordic countries’ most cherished actors. Now she’s taken up the director’s chair evincing both perceptive intimacy and impressive artistic courage. In one single take she tells the story of Maria (Tjelta) who’s trying to understand what happened to her teenage daughter. In the catastrophic spotlight, Maria and her husband Anders (Anders Baasmo Christiansen) are hurdled into 90 minutes of emotional chaos that forever changes them. The already prize-awarded Blind Spot immediately establishes Tuva Novotny as one of Sweden’s foremost film directors.
Two young women fight for survival in Carolina Hellsgård’s anxious and intimate, poetic zombie-thriller in a postapocalyptic Germany.
After the zombie apocalypse, two small German cities stand as the last bastions of humanity. In Weimar, people fight day in and day out against invading hordes of zombies. In Jena, the problem is handled differently. Vivi and Eva escape from Weimar onboard a freight train between the cities, but when the train breaks down out in the middle of the deserted countryside, they are forced to make the rest of the trip on foot. Their odyssey through Germany in a state of zombie apocalypse entails equal shares of anxious survival terror as well as poetic friendship drama. With a fresh take on the genre, Carolina Hellsgård makes the apocalypse both hopeful and beautiful.
Bouli Lanners shines as the involuntary single father of teenagers in Claire Burger’s earnest and elegant drama about parenthood and family ties.
Claire Burger solo debuts as director and scriptwriter after having won the debut prize in Cannes together with two codirectors for Party Girl (GFF 2015). And she does this with an equally as well-acted as well-written family drama about a middle-age father of teenagers who suddenly has to shoulder responsibility for the entire family. Bouli Lanners (Rust and Bone, The Giants) plays Mario, whose wife suddenly leaves him with the daughters Niki and Frida and their turbulent teen relationship problems. She cuts off communication completely, and Mario unexpectedly applies for a drama course as a last means of reaching out to her. Real Love is a warm, charming, and very authentic film, which received a well-deserved prize at the film festival in Venice.
Partying nail technician with attachment issues becomes a match-maker for an Iranian refugee in Miia Tervo’s irresistible debut.
With exuberant energy and disarming, dark humor, Miia Tervo tells a story of loneliness, everyday racism, and alcoholism in an intelligent romantic comedy that plays with prejudices and genre conventions. Aurora is a funny and complicated party girl who wants to exchange her crappy life for something better in Norway. Darian is a melancholy refugee from Iran who needs to get married fast so he and his daughter can stay in Finland. Aurora agrees to helping him, and quickly finds potential wives – some of which are even younger than 80. Mimosa Willamo puts verve and presence in the title role of stylish and charming film about the transformative power of love.
A brilliant Trine Dyrholm uses her entire register when May El-Toukhy explores the limits of desire and the destructive power of lies.
Anne (Dyrholm) runs a successful legal firm that specializes in children and youths. She and her husband Peter (Magnus Krepper) live a life where their successful careers coordinate with their twins’ horse riding lessons and lovely moments in the family’s enormous designer home in a lush suburb of Copenhagen. The face of this superficially perfect life cracks when Gustav, Peter’s teenage son from a previous relationship, shows up. Peter has a hard time getting close to his estranged son, but Anne finds a way of making contact. In the warm summer, Anne and Gustav’s relationship develops into something forbidden that risks ruining everything.
Eva Ionesco deepens her collaboration with Isabelle Huppert in this sensuous indulgence in the eighties about a young couple challenged by chic, upper-class bohemians.
The orphaned 16-year-old Rose leaves for Paris and parties with her boyfriend Michel at the legendary night club Le Palace, where the decadence is both beautiful and unrestrained. During one of the many unbridled nights out they meet Lucille (Huppert) and Hubert (Melvil Poupaud), a bohemian couple in their fifties who live in a huge house outside of Paris. It doesn’t take long before all four of them are living together – they love each other, fight each other, take drugs, make art, have sex and marry in one of film history’s most alternative wedding ceremonies. After the autobiographical debut My Little Princess (GFF 2012), Ionesco continues to explore the borders between art, power and sexuality.
Stylish, musical, well-played drama-comedy about a charismatic celebrity entrepreneur who is convicted for financial crimes and challenges the leader of the prison choir.
Markus does not feel safe in the prison yard. The others are rough and tough gangsters with a potential for violence, while he is just a jet-set reveler of a businessman with financial capital that took but a few shortcuts in the business world. It doesn’t take long before he is forced to move to the closed unit, where rapists and pedophiles are located. And above all, they sing. The prison choir is the internees’ most important activity, and Makus immediately wants to seize the conductor’s baton. With perfect pitch, Frederikke Aspöck (Out of Bounds GFF 2012, Rosita GFF 2016) narrates about power games, forgiveness and Rasmus Seebach songs in a star-packed comedy with pensive root chords.
Well-poised, intelligent and apt as Mia Engberg goes from documentary to fiction and explores “the visual silence.”
Just as in Engberg’s Guldbagge-awarded documentary Belleville Baby (GFF 2013), a dialog between Mia and Vincent is in progress. “Yes, but imagine if,” Mia says, and unfolds a long story that is not possible. Together with the recalcitrant Vincent, she develops a painful, modern and at the same time timeless tale. The aging gangster Vincent works long nights and dreams about another life. When he is unexpectedly given responsibility for his teenage daughter, Adina, life begins to change. The film takes place in Paris and at a secret place somewhere near you.